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Session Laws, 1997
Volume 795, Page 4356   View pdf image
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J.R. 1


Cuba to Baltimore, Maryland; Charleston, South Carolina; and Philadelphia; aside from
making significant stopovers in Williamsburg, Virginia, and in North Carolina; and

WHEREAS, After Spain declared war on Britain in June, 1779, the victories of
General Don Bernardo de Galvez in the lower Mississippi and at Baton Rouge, Mobile,
and Pensacola dismantled British resupply of close to 10,000 Native-American warriors
who were a major concern for General Washington because of the raids they had been
carrying out in the western areas of the colonies; and

WHEREAS, The Maryland Loyalist Regiment, a force comprised of Marylanders
from the Eastern Shore, was also defeated and captured during the campaigns of General
Galvez; and

WHEREAS, The victories of General Galvez resulted, additionally, in the capture
of four other British regiments, including: the Pennsylvania Loyalists, the elite British
69th Foot, also known as the Royal Americans, the British 16th Foot, and the German
Waldeck Regiment; and

WHEREAS, Fighting under the command of General Galvez were men from Spain,
Cuba, Mexico, Santo Domingo, Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Costa Rica, as well as from the
United States, France, Germany, Italy, and Native-American Nations such as the
Choctaw, Chickasaw, and Creek; and

WHEREAS, The United States Senate has recognized that the actions of those men
and their brave commander were very important for the triumph of American efforts in
the Carolinas and Georgia, and also for the final victory against Lord Charles Cornwallis
in Yorktown, Virginia; and

WHEREAS, The success of the French and American armies at Yorktown would
have been difficult to achieve without the donation of 500,000 pounds tournois that were
collected in six hours by prominent citizens of Havana, Cuba, for the campaign, and
without an additional 1,000,000 pounds that were subsequently donated by King Carlos
III of Spain for the same purpose; and

WHEREAS, The Yorktown campaign not only consisted of a siege by land but also
by sea, undertaken by the French fleet under Admiral de Grasse, whose ships had been
readied and supplied with 100,000 pesos from the Spanish colonies of Santo Domingo and
Puerto Rico that were handed over by Spanish authorities to the French for said purpose;

WHEREAS, An important element in the French naval victory at the Battle of the
Virginia Capes, which sealed the fate of Lord Cornwallis' army at Yorktown, was the
numerical superiority enjoyed by Admiral de Grasse's fleet, which resulted from a
Spanish naval squadron taking over the protection of the French colonies in the
Caribbean to allow the Admiral the benefit of maintaining his fleet intact, and thus obtain
the superiority in numbers deemed necessary to defeat the British; and

WHEREAS, Hardly any of these Hispanic contributions to American independence
are mentioned in the current history textbooks of this nation; now, therefore, be it

General Assembly acknowledges the pivotal role of Spain and Spanish America in the

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Session Laws, 1997
Volume 795, Page 4356   View pdf image
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